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Friday, 10 June 2011 07:22

Wired in #16: Dog Whistle

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Today we have Wired In's first interview with a band from Poland! Ania and Helena, the girls behind the Warsaw-based band Dog Whistle play toy casio and bass, sing together and manage to create a really hip sound. If their songs sound a little edgy it might be because the band is still young and their recording was not done professionally. Hear past that however and this particular roughness adds something to the music. They're definitely a band to look out for over the next few years! Co-founder Lena talked to E&M about why shitty groups can motivate you to start your own band, and about the people who inspire Dog Whistle's music, like her dad Krzysztof Marzec, the star of a famous Polish children's TV show.

E&M: What's the most difficult part of founding a band?

DW: It's sometimes hard to stay motivated, but since we started the band for pure fun and the joy of not being professional, it's no big deal for us. I believe it's also very hard to find someone who believes in you, but we were lucky enough to be spotted and supported by some people who were important for us.

E&M: Did you ever attend a concert where the musician impressed you so much you thought: "Wow, this is something I really want to do as well"?

Friday, 03 June 2011 08:55

Wired in #15: Lack of Afro

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Lack of Afro's music sounds like you're listening to one great soul band and it's hard to believe there's actually only one man behind it. Adam Gibbons is a talented multi instrumentalist who plays with samples from 60s and 70s soul music to create a fascinating new, dancy sound. His first two albums "Press On" and "My Groove your Move" have been quite a big success and give reason to be excited for his new CD coming out this September!

E&M: What is it like playing in a one man band?

LOA: Well it is both a blessing and a curse in many ways. Because 'Lack of Afro' is my thing, I don't have to run decisions past other band members or anything, so the whole 'band diplomacy' aspect that can be such a problem doesn't really come in to what I do. However, the flipside to that is that I miss the regular interaction with other musicians. The creative spark that comes from like-minded musicians playing in a room is hard to replicate on my own. I just play various things on different instruments and see what happens.

E&M: Your music has elements of soul and jazz from the 60s and 70s. When did you first become fascinated by this kind of music?

Friday, 27 May 2011 08:51

Wired in #14: Mighty Oaks

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Inspired by nature and quite an international group, the guys from Mighty Oaks write beautiful folk music that is perfect to escape the stressful life of the city. Thanks to my friend and E&M fan Parker Higgins I found this great band. They've only been playing together for just over a year and but have already discovered a developed sound and a clear identity as a band. Make sure to check out one of their upcoming shows and if you live in Berlin you might even get lucky and catch them playing in Mauerpark. E&M talked to their singer and co-founder Ian Hooper about the advantages of Berlin, making music and living mighty!

Mighty Oaks - All My Days from Claudio Donzelli on Vimeo.

IH: My Ma is actually from Ireland, so I was over in Europe quite a lot as a kid. Making the trek back here at this age was very humane, and I never really feel out of place over here. Also, Seattle and Portland, with their rich cafe and cycling cultures, are often described as somewhat European in culture. I guess the people are just different, but I break that down to a more micro level than continent or country.

E&M: In what way does having band members from four different countries shape the sound of your music?

Friday, 20 May 2011 10:25

Wired in #13: Wilhelm Tell Me

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Looking for music to dance through the summer nights? Thanks to our reader Julia Schulte, E&M is happy to present the four guys of the Hamburg pop band Wilhelm Tell Me! Make sure you catch one of their concerts in Germany and be ready for a night of dancy electro pop. Check out E&M's interview with their guitarist Frederik Deluweit and find out about the label they founded, the advantages of vinyl and why Beethoven is important for Europe.

E&M: There are so many stories about William/Wilhelm Tell - is your band name a reference to this Swiss national hero?

FD: Actually there was no reference to Wilhelm Tell when we first chose this name, it was just a coincidence. We always give new songs working titles until the lyrics are finished. One was Wilhelm Tell Me and our drummer Jan suggested that we should make it our band name. But we imagined an old lord in England sitting together with a friend in the early 19th century, who has huge knowledge about Europe, history and travelling the world, and asking him: "Wilhelm, tell me". It only really began to be seen as a reference to Wilhelm Tell once we started to do everything on our own, including our label, producing, booking, management. We try to be as independent as possible and to have full control over what we do.

E&M: All four band members are from Hamburg. Are there also other places in Europe that have influenced you?

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